New Zealand face the prospect of having to beat their toughest rivals so far without their best two shooters at the Commonwealth Games tomorrow.
Both Cathrine Latu and Maria Tutaia have large question marks against their chances of being ready to face Jamaica in the game to decide who tops the group and thus avoids world No 1 Australia in the semifinals.
Goal shoot Latu has a calf strain while goal attacker Tutaia, who has a foot strain, was hobbling about in a moon boot and with the aid of a crutch today. Both injuries happened against Northern Ireland on Sunday.
Neither took part in the 88-19 romp against St Lucia - attacking mid courter Liana Leota filled in for three quarters of the game at goal attack, scoring with 19 of 26 attempts - and coach Wai Taumaunu is concerned, but cautiously optimistic.
''They are travelling probably better than we thought a couple of days ago," she said of Latu and Tutaia. ''That's a positive from our perspective.
''We will be working hard on them and will make a call in the morning shortly before the start (at 10.30pm NZT). Hopefully things will look better tomorrow."
One small positive: international rookie Ellen Halpenny, who sprained an ankle on her Silver Ferns debut against Scotland in the second game of the tournament, played the final quarter against St Lucia, and came through well.
Taumaunu liked what she saw of Leota, the antithesis of the long, leggy traditional goal shooter.
''Liana's a really talented ball player," the coach said.
''She's clever, has great vision and can shoot. All those things mean she's very good there. It's just she's so tiny you don't tend to take a chance with her.
''I was really pleased with her shooting and I was very confident the old heads of Jodi (Brown) and Liana would find a way. It was two very experienced players enjoying themselves."
In grim situations dark humour can be found.
As Tutaia limped out of the arena today, a comment was passed that she didn't look any chance to play against Jamaica. Experienced centre Laura Langman quipped that she was on the mend - she was down to one crutch.
Langman believes the players have drawn closer as a group as the Games bid threatens to unravel in the medical room.
''It's always interesting because there really is a fine line. In this particular instance it's brought us tight.
''We had a tight match against Malawi and I think we possibly were thinking outcome rather than processes.
''Having these little hiccups makes you think about the processes and makes attention to detail really important. Everyone has knuckled down, no one goes anywhere by themselves and we've pulled together."
Langman, who today played her 104th successive test since her debut in 2005, is a walking fitness regimen.
''A tournament like this does test your conditioning and ability to recover well and your energy levels.
''When someone goes down, someone else has to take the load, but we've all got the mental and physical capacity to do that."
As for Jamaica, Taumaunu was mightily impressed by their performance against Malawi, whom they beat 81-50 on Monday.
They have the option of splitting the two tall shooters, Jhanielle Fowler-Reid and Romelda Aiken, putting one at each end of the court. However Taumaunu rates highly their first choice defensive pair of Nicole Pinnock - Aitken's sister - and Stacian Facey.
She believes the influence of former Australian coach Jill McIntosh has brought a significant change in their tactical approach.
''It's been error free, risk free strategy in terms of giving the ball to the shooter. In the past they would have thrown high risk, entertaining passes.
''That's not happening. It's still a lovely quality of netball, but that's not what they used to do."